Jeremy is one of the 275,000 New York kids who can access quality health care because of Child Health Plus.
Two weeks ago, we blogged about the status of funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, which expires in September of this year. The federal Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provides the majority of funding for New York’s Child Health Plus program, which currently covers about 275,000 kids. Earlier this year, House and Senate Democrats released two bills for a clean, four-year extension of CHIP funding. Then, Republicans countered with a discussion draft that would extend CHIP by four-years but would rollback key pieces of the successful program. HCFANY submitted comments about the Republican proposal, which you can read here.
Today, House Republicans and Democrats introduced compromise legislation that would offer a two-year extension of CHIP as a part of a larger legislation package: the so-called “doc fix” bill meant to fix Medicare’s physician payment formula, the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR). Unlike the Republican’s discussion draft, the House bill proposes a clean extension of CHIP, without any of the worrisome cuts to the program. Senate Democrats, including New York’s own Senator Schumer, are still pushing for a clean, four-year extension.
States in the midst of finalizing their FY2016 budgets (New York’s is due by April 1) are eager to see CHIP extended as soon as possible. Because the SGR expires at the end of this month, this legislation could be a way to extend CHIP well before the summer. The House is likely to come to a decision on the bill by Friday of this week.